When it comes to finances as a DACA individual it is a very complicated topic. What banks will require US citizenship just to apply? What credit card should I apply for? How do I get a home, auto, or personal loan as a DACA individual?
I am not getting compensation in exchange of recommending the tools or financial services below. Please read all the fine print associated with any account opening. Proceed at your own discretion on what services or accounts will benefit you.
While a lot of my specific experience with finances will be specific to my DACA status I will provide some insight into some tools I use that don’t apply just to DACA individuals.
I track my finances with Mint. It is a bit of a process to get it set up with your accounts but it’s a quality tool that helps you see everything dealing with income, expenses, savings, and loans. They have added multiple bank integrations that let you seamlessly sync all your accounts on their platform.
I also use Credit Karma to keep track of my credit score. It has a view of what your account balances look like on every credit score update.
I recommend opening an account with CapitalOne 360 because it grants you a checking account that accrues interest. There is rarely any checking accounts offered with this perk. At least there weren’t many when I was looking in the past. For a savings account I personally recommend going down the path of using an online bank. They have better interest earning rates than most other banks. I have used Marcus by Goldman Sachs because of their great rate. At one point their savings accounts were earning 2.25% interest. Most recently it is at 1.90% which is pretty high and let’s you keep up a bit above the US inflation rate (1.8% 2019).
For DACA students I would recommend reading up on the benefits of having a credit card. I personally set up my first card with Discover It for Students. It was a straightforward process and I learned to manage credit with that card during my undergraduate career.
I personally haven’t had to look much into auto, or home loans yet. If anyone has any information on this please comment below. I do know that BB&T does not work with DACA individuals for auto loans. This information is as of ~September of 2019. Things could have changed since. If in doubt always ask up front with the bank you are working with.
I didn’t go to in detail with everything for the sake of keeping things short but also to quickly give some insight on finances as a DACA individual. Feel free to drop some comments, questions, or suggestions on how to improve. I’ll either expand this article into more specific categories to expand on each some more or make a series of it.
Thank you for reading!